First off, I know many of you have been wondering what was said in regards to Callie's MRI results, I have lots of you messaging me, texts and we are so thankful so many are thinking and praying for her. There are some circumstances that are just a lot to take in and you need time to process, this would be one of those times. Not to mention, it is a lot to explain and can be somewhat confusing. So, I will do my best to explain :-) So, since my last update, Callie had her MRI and it was an interesting experience ;-) It was her 1st MRI so the loud noises, etc freaked her out in the beginning but she managed to make it through. Callie's MRI raised numerous questions, so they team decided they needed to get the whole team together and conference on her. Multiple cardiologists, her cath doctor and surgeon were present during this meeting.
Some of you may know and some may not, but Callie has a very unique and complicated set of heart defects. There are very few with all the combinations of defects that Callie has, if any at all. Years ago, we were told Callie would never have her bidirectional Glenn, then guess what, a year later - she was able to have that surgery! Then, we were told, she may not be a candidate for the Fontan surgery and if she did make it there, she would be VERY high risk. Guess what, she rec'd her fenestrated Fontan Jan. 2016. God has blessed us with an amazing kid and we praise him for her feisty self. And this brings me to the MRI & cath results.....
Currently, Callie has a fenestrated Fontan - simply meaning if you think of a pipe as her Fontan running up and down, she has whole in the side of it, some call it a pop off - basically meaning she can still mix her blue and red blood as her body sees fit. When she had her Fontan back in Jan. 2016 this was needed or her Fontan would have failed. Now, her body is using that fenestration too much, so the blood goes up the Fontan and instead of continuing up to feed into her pulmonary arteries, it is simply using the fenestration as an escape route, essentially using the path of least resistance. So, instead of her lungs getting the blue blood it needs to pick up oxygen, her lungs are mainly getting red oxygenated blood - so once it reaches the lungs, it cannot pick up anymore oxygen - this is one of the reasons why are oxygen is lower than what it should be. The blue blood just keeps getting recirculated into the body. They saw some narrowing in certain places but nothing that should keep the blood from where it should be going. In Addition, she has developed collateral vessels to her left lung and this is a huge problem , so on the left side she is getting a lot of her blood flow through these vessels instead of using her Fontan circuit. Long term, this is very bad. They did coil off (get rid of) 6 collaterals in the cath lab but we were told she has a lot left. They coiled off the biggest ones. Which hopefully by coiling these off, will help the blood flow go where it is suppose to.
They team discussed surgical options for her and at the moment her surgeon feels there is nothing he can improve her situation. He may re-evaluated at a later date if needed. Secondly, they talked if there was a way to make her fenestration smaller so she would use it less, at the moment not really. But, her cath doctor will think more about possibly closing her current one and then making a new smaller hole, so she can still mix her blue and red blood as her body needs to. Thirdly, they also discussed heart transplant.
The current plan is to start Callie on a vasodilator medication, the hope is this medication will help her rely less on collaterals and use the Fenestration less and utilize her Fontan circuit. Please pray hard this medication works, pray hard. We are still waiting on insurance to approve the medication, please pray it comes very soon - so, she can start it. 6 months from the date she starts the medication, we have to return to California for another heart cath and maybe MRI, to see how the medication is working. Which is looking like that will be January. While we are there in January, they also want her to be evaluated for transplant, to see if she is even a heart transplant candidate. Not saying, that she is to that point yet because she is not. Everyone actually is amazed at how great she looks and is doing despite how she looks on the inside. Big praise there! This way they will know if she is not a transplant candidate, they have to do everything in their power to optimize her as she is, whether that means more surgery or whatever. If it comes down to she needs a transplant, I pray she is a candidate but I also hope that is something that can be put off for a very, very, long time!!!!
My daily prayer for the next 6 mths, is that the Lord will do amazing and unexplainable things in that little body of hers, that this medication will be hugely beneficial to her and that the changes will be seen. And that the talk of transplant will be put on the back burner. I know we serve a great God and that is 100% seen through Callie's life.
In 6 months when we return to California, this will be at least a 2-3 week trip due to all the testing and extensive appointments that will need to be done. By the time we financially get back on our feet from this trip, we will be preparing for our next trip. Please pray the Lord provides for all that is needed financially during this time. I am leaving the GoFundMe website up and activate to help prepare for the next trip, the link is on the right hand set of the page, just click on Callie's Heart Fund if you feel led to give. I also will post a paypal link as I have many ask about sending funds via paypal.
I know I say it a lot, but it is 100% heartfelt - We are forever grateful to the continue support of each and everyone of you over the years. I hope most of what I said, makes sense ;-)
Please keep our sweet girl and our family in your prayers over the next 6 months!